Ozzie Guillen: 'I'm not a princess or an icon'

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Teams are inquiring about A.J. Pierzynski’s availability and general manager Ken Williams replied “yes” yesterday when asked if he’s losing patience with the White Sox. So what does manager Ozzie Guillen say to all of that?

Hey, I don’t blame him. … The expectations we have with this club is very high. We had a ball club better than what we showed. And we have better hitters than what we showed. … Being patient is one thing I’m not very good at and Kenny is very strong with the way he makes moves and attacks the club, the way he does his business. He wants to win. …



I don’t care about me. That’s his job. With the coaches, one thing about it, we do everything we can to make those guys better. I know it. I fired three coaches myself because I don’t think they’re on the same page we are. We’re going to blame somebody, I do. If he wants to blow this ball club away, that’s his call. … We compete, we’re just not winning games. Is it about me? …



I think I do what I can do every day to make this ball club work. It’s something I believe if this thing don’t work, I’m not a princess or an icon or not that great. If the team don’t work the way it [should] be working, I’ll be the first one to be blamed. That’s the way this thing works in baseball or any sport. You don’t produce, it’s easy to fire one guy or two or three guys than 25.

As a Twins fan few things please me more than the White Sox struggling, but as a baseball fan I’m hoping Guillen doesn’t become the scapegoat. He’s far too entertaining.

Orioles catcher Caleb Joseph: “We suck”

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As I mentioned in the recaps this morning, Baltimore lost its 107th game last night, tying its 1988 mark for the most losses in Orioles history. They will certainly break that record and will almost certainly blast by the all-time franchise loss record of 111, set by the 1939 St. Louis Browns. That team only played a 154-game schedule so the O’s likely won’t be the worst team in the franchise’s 118-season history by winning percentage, but it’ll be close enough.

Over at The Athletic Dan Connolly reports that one Oriole, catcher Caleb Joseph, is well aware of how bad the Orioles are and he is not mincing words about it:

“I’m not a loser. So, to be associated with that severity of losing is embarrassing. It’s shameful really . . . I don’t blame [fans] at all [for not attending games]. We suck.”

That last bit was in response to Matt Olson of the Athletics coming up to him before a recent game, noticing how many empty seats there were in Camden Yards and asking Joseph if it was always like that. Let that sink in: a player for the Oakland Athletics who, year after year, have some of the worst attendance in baseball, is shocked at how poorly Baltimore is drawing.

As for Joseph, he spends a lot of time talking about how the attitude is all wrong with the Orioles, how there does not seem to be any accountability and how things weren’t like that when he came up back when the Orioles were winning. Which, well, yeah.

Baseball players often attribute winning and losing to whatever attitude is prevailing around the clubhouse. Maybe that’s true on greatly underachieving teams or borderline teams that aren’t catching the breaks, but it seems far more likely that winning makes teams happy and instills camaraderie while losing makes teams sad and makes people look inward. Players tend to get the causation wrong about all of that because, I suspect, they don’t want to admit that they’re not as talented as the competition so it has to come down to some motivational or mental defect. Which, if that makes a player feel better, fine, but these O’s weren’t going to win many games even if they came in with smiles on their faces while singing “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” out of their rear ends every day. They just aren’t good.

Whatever you think of all of that, one thing is clear: the O’s need to clean house in a major, major way.